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An author of more than 100 books, Arthur C. Clarke’s imagination and insight influenced modern science via works like his classic 2001: A Space Odyssey.
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Born on December 16, 1917, in Minehead, England, Arthur C. Clarke established himself as a preeminent science fiction and nonfiction writer during the mid-20th century. He wrote the novels Childhood’s End and 2001: A Space Odyssey, which was also turned into a film with Stanley Kubrick. Clarke authored more than 100 books, and many of his ideas around science had links to future technological innovation. Clarke died on March 19, 2008,
in Sri Lanka.
Writer Arthur Charles Clarke was born on December 16, 1917, in Minehead, Somerset, SW England, UK. The son of a farmer, he studied at King's College, London, and worked in scientific research before turning to fiction.
He was a radar instructor in World War II, and originated the idea of satellite communication in a scientific article in 1945, decades before they became a reality. He also predicted space shuttles, super-fast computers, lightning quick communications and that man would reach the moon.
The author of more than 100 books, his themes were exploration - in both the near and distant future - and the position of humanity in the hierarchy of the universe. His first book was Prelude to Space (1951), and while he is credited with some of the genre's best examples - Rendezvous with Rama (1973), The Fountains of Paradise (1979) - his name will always be associated first with 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) which, under the direction of Stanley Kubrick, became a highly successful film.
Later works include the sequels to 2001, 2010: Space Odyssey II (1982, film 1984), 2062: Odyssey III (1988), and 3001: the Final Odyssey (1997). Other books include The Garden of Rama (1991) and The Snows of Olympus (1994).
Non-fiction publications include Arthur C Clarke's Mysterious World (1980, also a TV series) and Arthur C Clarke's Chronicles of the Strange and Mysterious (1987).
Clarke married in 1953, and was divorced in 1964. He had no children. He was knighted in 2000 by Queen Elizabeth, although poor health prevented him from traveling to London to receive the honor in person.
Clarke had emigrated to Sri Lanka in 1956, drawn by marine diving which he said was as near as he could come to the weightlessness in space.
Clarke died on March 19, 2008, in Sri Lanka. He had been suffering from breathing problems, had post-polio syndrome for decades, and used a wheelchair. He was 90 years old. Upon Clarke's death, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse paid tribute to him as a "great visionary."
Clarke left instructions for a strictly secular private funeral. He also requested burial in the family plot of his Sri Lankan business partner, Hector Ekanayake, with whose family he lived.
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